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1890 Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Story County, Iowa

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Organization Of The State—Proceedings Of The Constitutional Conventions—Election And Seating Of The First State Officers—Meeting Of The First General Assembly—Construction Of Public Buildings—Change Of Location Of The Seat Of Government.

Men who their duties know, But know their rights, and knowing, dare maintain-Sir W. Jones.

AN act of the Territorial Legislature of Iowa, approved on February 12, 1844, submitted to the people, to be voted upon at their township elections in April following, the question of the formation of a State constitution, and provided for the election of delegates to a convention to be convened for that purpose. The vote was largely in favor of the measure, and the delegates elected assembled in convention at Iowa City, on the 7th of October, 1844. On the 1st of November following, the convention completed its work and adopted the first State constitution.

The president of the convention, Hon. Shepherd Leffler, was instructed to transmit a certified copy of this constitution to the delegate in Congress, to be by him submitted to that body at the earliest practicable day. It was also provided that it should be submitted, together with any conditions or changes that might be made by Congress, to the people of the Territory, for their approval or rejection, at the township election in April, 1845.

The boundaries of the State, as defined by this constitution, were as follows:

Beginning in the middle of the channel of the Mississippi River, opposite mouth of the Des Moines River; thence up the said river Des Moines, in the middle of the main channel thereof, to a point where it is intersected by the Old Indian Boundary line, or line run by John C. Sullivan, in the year 1816; thence westwardly along said line to the " old " northwest corner of Missouri ; thence due west to the middle of the main channel of the Missouri River; thence up in the middle of the main channel of the river last mentioned to the mouth of the Sioux or Calumet River; thence in a direct line to the middle of the main channel of the St. Peters River, where the Watonwan River-according to Nicollet's map-enters the same; thence down the middle of the main channel of said river to the middle of the main channel of the Mississippi River; thence down the middle of the main channel of said river to the place of beginning. </p>

These boundaries were rejected by Congress, but by act approved March 3, 1845, a State called Iowa was admitted into the Union, provided the people accepted the act, bounded as follows:

Beginning at the mouth of the Des Moines River, at the middle of the Mississippi; thence by the middle of the channel of that river to a parallel of latitude passing through the mouth of the Mankato or Blue Earth River; thence west, along said parallel of latitude, to a point

Page 60 of 460

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